Texas Midwest 2022 Visitors Guide

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BAIRD

Population 1,492 - (page 24) The county seat of Callahan County, Baird was established in 1880 as cattle drives moved across Texas. Small camp settlements sprang up along the trail and often turned into construction camps for building the west bound T&P Railroad. By that time, the railroad had arrived in northern markets from South Texas beginning in the 1870’s. The town flourished through the turn of the century and the population diversified into agriculture and oil industries. The historic 1911 T&P Railway Passenger Depot, anchoring the south end of Market St. houses a Transportation Museum. On the north end is the 1929 Callahan County Courthouse. The 1898 County Jail is one of the oldest operating jails in the country. The Bankhead National Highway, from Washington, DC to San Diego, CA, was the nation’s first all-weather coast-to-coast highway. Enthusiasts currently travel this historic highway which comes through Downtown Baird. Chamber of Commerce, 100 Market St., 325-854-2003, bairdchamber@yahoo.com.

BALLINGER

Population 3,690 - (page 25) Ballinger was established in 1886 when the Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe Railway built westward out of Brownwood. Extensive advertising in the Dallas, Fort Worth, Austin, San Antonio and Galveston newspapers brought 6,000 people to the sale of town lots. The town was originally called Gresham and then Hutchings (in honor of Santa Fe stockholders); it was officially named in honor of William Pitt Ballinger, a Galveston attorney and stockholder of the railways. With rail and farming driving the local economy the community had amazing progress in a short amount of time! By 1904 the town had many businesses, hotels, a school and a restaurant. Today Ballinger is home to Buddy’s Plant Plus, a facility that manufactures water soluble plant fertilizer for Scotts and is the headquarters for the multi-state renowned Mueller, Inc. which manufactures metal for buildings. Both industries provide employment for many residents. Ballinger prides itself on its excellent school system, which also provides employment for teachers, coaches and staff. Ballinger offers great shopping and dining experiences as well as its beautiful City Park and authentically restored Andrew Carnegie Library. Chamber of Commerce, 325-365-2333, ballingerareachamberofcommerce@gmail.com.

BRADY

Population 5,544 Home is where the heart is, and the TRUE heart of Texas is McCulloch County - the geographic center of the state. When the area was settled in the 1870s, the community was named Brady City after Brady Creek, which runs through town. The name was shortened to Brady when the town was incorporated in 1906. Henry and Nancy Fulcher, the first settlers on Brady Creek, donated land for the town site in the mid-1870s. A post office opened in 1876. After residents of McCulloch County chose Brady as county seat on May 15, 1876, the town grew quickly. Brady had about fifty residents in 1877, and a stone courthouse was completed in 1878. Thomas Maples began weekly publication of the Brady Sentinel in 1880. By 1884, Brady had two churches, a district school, three stores, two hotels, and 300 residents. Today the community is a thriving business hub for the smaller surrounding communities. Whatever your pleasure, you’re always welcome to hang your hat in the TRUE Heart of Texas! Chamber of Commerce, 405 S Bridge St, Brady, TX 76825, info@bradytx.com

TMCN Visitors Guide

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